William Cooper

An Aboriginal Life Story

Bain Attwood
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William Cooper

An Aboriginal Life Story

Bain Attwood
An important tribute to the work and life of an extraordinary Aboriginal activist.
William Cooper's passionate struggle against the dispossession of Aboriginal people and the denial of their rights and his heroic fight for them to become citizens in their own country has been widely commemorated and celebrated. By carefully reconstructing the historical losses his Yorta Yorta people suffered and endured, William Cooper: An Aboriginal Life Story reveals how the first seventy years of Cooper's life inspired the remarkable political work he undertook in the 1930s Focusing on Cooper's most important campaigns-his famous petition to the British king George for an Aboriginal representative in the Australian parliament, his call for a day of mourning after 150 years of colonisation, the walk-off of the Yorta Yorta people from Cumeroogunga reserve in 1939 and his opposition to the establishment of an Aboriginal regiment in the Second World War-this carefully researched study sheds important new light on the long struggle that Indigenous people have fought to…
William Cooper's passionate struggle against the dispossession of Aboriginal people and the denial of their rights and his heroic fight for them to become citizens in their own country has been widely commemorated and celebrated. By carefully reconstructing the historical losses his Yorta Yorta people suffered and endured, William Cooper: An Aboriginal Life Story reveals how the first seventy years of Cooper's life inspired the remarkable political work he undertook in the 1930s. Focusing on Cooper's most important campaigns-his famous petition to the British king George for an Aboriginal representative in the Australian parliament, his call for a day of mourning after 150 years of colonisation, the walk-off of the Yorta Yorta people from Cumeroogunga reserve in 1939 and his opposition to the establishment of an Aboriginal regiment in the Second World War-this carefully researched study sheds important new light on the long struggle that Indigenous people have fought to have the truth about Australia's black history heard and win representation in Australia's political order.

A powerful book ... a fitting tribute to Cooper's life and activism.”
Australian Book Review

A rich, thoughtful and incisive biography that places Cooper in country as much as time, and which draws out the strong moral bent of a man compelled to seek justice for his people.”
The Guardian

In recalling this fine Australian, Bain Attwood has rendered his nation a service. The research is prodigious, the argument clearly presented, engaging and with ruthless logic. Readers will see the Australian tragedy clearly and convincingly. They will learn to love and admire this indefatigable fighter.”
Canberra times

Retraces meticulously Uncle William Cooper’s unwavering battle against the dispossession of Aboriginal people and the denial of their fundamental rights.”
NITV Radio

Bain Attwood

Bain Attwood

Bain Attwood is Professor of History at Monash University and has held fellowships at the University of Cambridge and Harvard University. In 2010 his book Possession: Batman’s Treaty and the Matter of History won the Ernest Scott Prize for the most distinguished contribution to the history of Australia or New Zealand or colonial history. Previous works include Rights for Aborigines; Telling the Truth About Aboriginal History and Empire and The Making of Native Title:

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